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Julie Walters

Julie Walters

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Also Known As: Julia Mary Walters Died:
Born: February 22, 1950 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Birmingham, England, GB Profession: actor, nurse

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Dame Julie Walters, DBE was an Oscar nominee and multiple BAFTA winner whose skillful comedic and dramatic turns in "Educating Rita" (1983), "Billy Elliott" (2000), the "Harry Potter," "Mamma Mia!" and "Paddington" franchises and "Mary Poppins Returns" (2018) made her one of the most popular and prolific actresses on both sides of the Atlantic. Born Julia Mary Walters in Edgbaston, a suburb of Birmingham, England on February 22, 1950, she was one of five children by English and Irish parents. By her own account, she was not an academic-minded child - she was dismissed from Holly Lodge Grammar School for Girls for misbehavior - and went to work at an insurance company at the age of 15. Walters briefly trained as a nurse at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, but left to pursue a long-standing dream of becoming an actor Studies in English and drama at Manchester Metropolitan University preceded her first stage roles with the Everyman Theatre Company, where she performed with fellow future stars like Jonathan Pryce, Bill Nighy and Pete Posthlewaite, with whom she was romantically involved during the 1970s. Stints in improvisational comedy and cabaret, as well as guest roles on television,...

Dame Julie Walters, DBE was an Oscar nominee and multiple BAFTA winner whose skillful comedic and dramatic turns in "Educating Rita" (1983), "Billy Elliott" (2000), the "Harry Potter," "Mamma Mia!" and "Paddington" franchises and "Mary Poppins Returns" (2018) made her one of the most popular and prolific actresses on both sides of the Atlantic. Born Julia Mary Walters in Edgbaston, a suburb of Birmingham, England on February 22, 1950, she was one of five children by English and Irish parents. By her own account, she was not an academic-minded child - she was dismissed from Holly Lodge Grammar School for Girls for misbehavior - and went to work at an insurance company at the age of 15. Walters briefly trained as a nurse at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, but left to pursue a long-standing dream of becoming an actor Studies in English and drama at Manchester Metropolitan University preceded her first stage roles with the Everyman Theatre Company, where she performed with fellow future stars like Jonathan Pryce, Bill Nighy and Pete Posthlewaite, with whom she was romantically involved during the 1970s. Stints in improvisational comedy and cabaret, as well as guest roles on television, preceded her first stab at stardom as a freethinking hairdresser from Liverpool who aspires to better herself in Willy Russell's play "Educating Rita" (1980). Walters earned critical raves for her performance, which was followed by a successful collaborative partnership with actress and playwright Victoria Wood, whom she had met while both were appearing in a 1978 sketch revue, "In at the Death." Their collaborations included a TV adaptation of Wood's play "Talent" (ITV, 1979) and two sketch comedy series, "Wood and Walters" (ITV, 1981-82) and "Victoria Wood As Seen on TV" (BBC Two, 1985-87), which yielded one of Walters' most popular comic characters, the elderly tea lady Mrs. Overall, on the soap opera spoof "Acorn Antiques." The character and sketch would earn a devoted fan following and an award-winning musical adaptation, directed by Trevor Nunn, in 2005. In 1983, Walters stepped into the spotlight in the film version of "Educating Rita," directed by Lewis Gilbert and co-starring Michael Caine as the alcoholic professor whose love of literature is reignited by Walters' Rita. For her performance, Walters earned an Oscar nomination, a Golden Globe and a BAFTA for Best Actress in a Leading Role - the first of seven - and soon settled into steady character work in both dramatic and comedic features and television. Walters was a naïve waitress who supplemented her income by renting her apartment to escorts in Terry Jones' "Personal Services" (1987), the playwright Joe Orton's mother in Stephen Frears' "Prick Up Your Ears" (1987), and a mother who becomes involved in Irish-English peace relations in "Titanic Town" (1998), one year before she was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE). On television, she reunited with Wood for a 1991 special, "Julie Walters and Friends" (ITV) and the series "Dinnerladies" (BBC One, 1998-2000), about workers at a factory canteen in Manchester. In 2000, she netted her second Oscar and Golden Globe nominations, as well as a second BAFTA, as the dedicated dance teacher of a young Irish boy in Stephen Daldry's "Billy Elliot"; the success of the film led to a slew of high-profile film projects, including a recurring role as Molly Weasley in the "Harry Potter" film franchise, save for "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" (2005). Walters also played one of a group of middle-aged women who produced a nude calendar to raise money for cancer research in "Calendar Girls" (2003), and netted BAFTA TV Awards for the comedy "Strange Relations" (ITV, 2001), with Paul Reiser; a grieving mother in "Murder" (2002); an updated Wife of Bath in BBC One's "Canterbury Tales" (2003); and as Northern Ireland Secretary of State Mo Mowlam in "Mo" (Channel 4, 2010). Between these projects, Walters played Jane Austen's mother in "Becoming Jane" (2007), the vivacious Rosie in "Mamma Mia!" (2008), the kindly Mrs. Bird in "Paddington" (2014) and its 2017 sequel, and a feisty boardinghouse owner in "Brooklyn" (2015), which brought her 16th BAFTA nomination, while also finding time to be named Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2008. Walters remained remarkably busy in her sixth decade, penning a 2008 autobiography, That's Another Story, paying tribute to Wood, who died in 2016, with the documentary series "Our Friend Victoria" (BBC, 2017), enjoying major supporting roles in "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again!" and "Mary Poppins Returns" (both 2018), while also being named Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2017.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Sherlock Gnomes (2018)
2.
3.
 Paddington 2 (2018)
6.
 Effie Gray (2015)
7.
 Brooklyn (2015)
8.
 Paddington (2015)
10.
 One Chance (2013)
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1980:
Appeared in the West End production of "Educating Rita"
2005:
Cast in Richard E. Grant's directorial debut "Wah-Wah"
2008:
Featured in the film version of the ABBA musical "Mamma Mia!"
1991:
First U.S. film role, opposite Liza Minnelli in "Stepping Out"
1999:
Played Mrs. Mann in the miniseries remake of "Oliver Twist" (PBS)
1985:
Joined cast of the BBC variety series "Victoria Wood As Seen On TV"
2003:
Played a widow determined to make some good come out of her husband's death in "Calendar Girls"
1991:
Played Robert Lindsay's mother on the Channel 4 series "GBH"
2009:
Returned to play Molly Weasley for "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince"
2000:
Acted on the London stage in a revival of "All My Sons"
2006:
Played the lead role in "Driving Lessons" alongside Rupert Grint (who played her son Ron in the "Harry Potter" series)
1985:
Played the mother on the British TV series "The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole"
2002:
Reprised role of Molly Weasley for "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets"
1993:
Starred in British TV-movie "Wide-Eyed and Legless" (released in the U.S. as "The Wedding Gift")
1982:
Cast on the BBC2 comedy-drama "Boys from the Black Stuff"
1996:
Co-starred with Rupert Graves in "Intimate Relations"
1982:
Co-starred with Victoria Wood in the Granada TV series "Wood and Walters"
1989:
Played lead role in British stage production of "Frankie and Johnnie in the Clair de Lune"
:
Joined Everyman Theatre company in Liverpool during mid-1970s
1983:
Reprised stage role for the film version of "Educating Rita"; earned first Best Actress Academy Award nomination
1991:
Starred opposite Ken Stott in the West End revival of "The Rose Tattoo"
1984:
Appeared opposite Ian Charleson in British stage production of "Fool for Love"
1979:
Landed early TV appearance on the British series "Screenplay"
1994:
Garnered praise for her performance in "Sister, My Sister"
1997:
Landed featured role in the miniseries "Melissa" (Channel 4)
:
Joined Granada's Stable Theatre for one year after finishing at Manchester Polytechnic
1998:
Offered a strong performance as a 1970s Belfast housewife who tries to negotiate a peace in "Titanic Town"
2007:
Portrayed Jane Austen's mother in the period film "Becoming Jane"
2011:
Appeared on the ITV drama "The Jury II"
2012:
Voiced The Witch in Disney/Pixar animated feature "Brave"
2014:
Played Mrs. Bird in "Paddington"
2015:
Played Cynthia Coffin on "Indian Summers"
2017:
Reprised Mrs. Bird role in "Paddington 2"
2018:
Voiced Mrs. Montague in "Sherlock Gnomes"
2018:
Appeared in Disney's revival sequel "Mary Poppins Returns"
2018:
Played Rosie in "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again"
1976:
Made her London stage debut in "Funny Peculiar"
2000:
Played the title character's supportive ballet teacher in "Billy Elliot"; earned a Supporting Actress Academy Award nomination
2001:
Was cast as Mrs. Weasley in "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone"
2004:
Once again played Mrs. Weasley in "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban"
1998:
Played Victoria Wood's mother on the BBC comedy series "Dinnerladies"
:
Made her stage debut in a Liverpool production of "The Taming of the Shrew"
1992:
Headlined her own British TV special "Julie Walters and Friends" (ITV)
2010:
Reprised role of Molly Weasley for the seventh installment of the series directed by David Yates, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1"
2012:
Played Molly Weasley in the final "Harry Potter" film, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2"
2015:
Appeared as Mrs. Kehoe in historical drama "Brooklyn"
2017:
Played a supporting role in romantic drama "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Queen Elizabeth Hospital: -
Manchester Polytechnic: -
Manchester Polytechnic: -

Notes

Appointed to the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth II in 1999.

On her "Educating Rita" promotional tour of the USA: "I had great fun, but I was visiting, so I was free to say what I liked and go home. I couldn't take the glitz and lip gloss and shoulder pads, and the fact that people felt they have to look gorgeous all the time. I'd hate to be an actress in L.A. I couldn't stand the pressure." --Julie Walters in Newsday, August 1, 1994.

"Everyone falls in love with Julie Walters. She rubs off on people." --writer Alan Beasdale

On her character in "Billy Elliot", Walters told David Germain of Associated Press (Chicago Sun-Times, October 27, 2000): "I loved the woman. She was truthfully written, I felt. She was disappointed on every single level you can possibly be disappointed. And I just loved that."

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Pete Postlethwaite. Actor. Worked together at Liverpool's Everyman Theatre.
husband:
Grant Roffey. Father of Maisie; together since 1985 when they met in a Fulham wine bar; married in at City Hall in NYC in 1997.

Family close complete family listing

daughter:
Maisie Roffey. Born c. 1988; Walters did not work for two years in the early 1990s to care for Maisie while she suffered with leukemia before the disease went into remission.

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